MOMBASA, August 19 – The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Tuesday said it was in the process of enacting a comprehensive anti-money laundering legislation.
CBK Governor Professor Njuguna Ndung\’u said the institution was committed to fighting money laundering and terrorism financing despite inherent challenges.
Speaking when he officially opened a five-day workshop of the Eastern and Southern African Anti – Money Laundering Group in Mombasa, Ndung\’u said the meeting came at an opportune time as Parliament prepares to debate on the proceeds of Crime and Anti –Money laundering Bill 2008.
Ndung’u said CBK was cognizant that the country‘s vision of being a regional trade and financial services hub is founded on the enactment of an enabling legal and regularity framework..
“A sound Anti – Money laundering and regulatory regime is a critical plank to their aspiration,” he said.
Ndung’u noted that the region was vulnerable to money laundering particularly given its mainly cash-based economies that is further aggravated by porous borders and weak institutional enforcements.
He disclosed that the banking sector has been faced with a number of challenges in the implementation of the CBK guidelines issued in 2002 and 2006.
The Governor said that the 2006 guidelines were reissued following a review that took into account international developments and experiences of financial institution in implementing the previous guidelines.
He said the key changes included the strengthening of customers due diligence procedures and providing additional guidance on identification of suspicious transaction by commercial banks among others.
Ndung’u assured the delegates that CBK would continue to monitor adherence to the existing guidelines through its surveillance mechanisms.